If you’re looking to keep your kids reading a lot of books, you’ll need this list!
More Good Books for 9 Year Olds (Fourth Grade) Continued . . .
More Good Books for 9 Year Olds (Fourth Grade)
Lucy & Andy Neanderthal by Jeffrey Brown HUMOR / HISTORY / GRAPHIC NOVEL
Little funny stories about the life of a neanderthal family are intermixed with factual information about the actual history — hunting practices, size of large cats, that sort of thing — in this graphic novel from the author of the Jedi Academy series.
Extreme Adventures series by Justin D’Ath – ADVENTURE
I read Shark Bait in the Extreme Adventure series and though it was a fantastic book, especially for kids who love action, danger, adventure, with some cool environmental focus thrown in for extra pizazz.
Warren the 13th and The All-Seeing Eye: A Novel by Tania Del Rio, illustrated by Will Staehle FANTASY
Monstrous by MarcyKate Connolly FANTASY
Kristy’s Great Idea Babysitter’s Club #1 Full-Color Graphix Novel by Ann M. Martin, illustrated by Raina Telgemeier REALISTIC
We’re loving these updated Babysitter’s Club graphic novels by the uber-talented Raina Telegemeier who wrote the highly-acclaimed Smile and Sister. Currently there are three published with many more in the works. It’s a good idea to start with book one since the stories are told in a specific order with details from previous stories. These are funny and fun to read, maybe even more than once. (The Truth About Stacey #2, Mary Ann Saves the Day #3)
Song of the Mockingbird: My Journey with Josefina (American Girl) by by
The Magnificent Lizzie Brown and the Ghost Ship by Vicki Lockwood MYSTERY
I couldn’t put this down! Lizzie Brown lives with a circus, she’s their psychic and she’s for real. When the circus travels to the seaside home of a Maharaja, Lizzie’s visions help her figure out who stole from him and if the Ghost Ship is real.
The Mysterious Woods of Whistle Root by Christopher Pennell, illustrated by Rebecca Bond FANTASY
Unusual because she can only sleep during the day, orphan Carly befriends a musical rat and with her new friend from school, Green, discovers the reason the owls are stealing all the rats — a curse that brought the terrible griddlebeast. Suspenseful, well-written, and intriguing.
Secrets of Selkie Bay by Shelley Moore Thomas MAGICAL REALISM
Cordie’s the oldest of three daughters living with the hopes that their mother who left suddenly will return. Her sister believes their mom is a selkie who had to return to sea. After all, their mom looks like a selkie with her black hair and pale skin, and she owned a dark coat, and her favorite book is A Child’s Book of Selkies. To find out, the sisters take a boat to a secret island where they are helped by a mysterious seal. Is it their mother? Even more worrisome is that their boat leaks and the seal is injured. Secrets of Selkie Bay is magical story that made me believe in the unbelievable. And see the magic in family, forgiveness, and love.
Fable Comics edited by Chris Duffy MYTH / FABLE
My kids and I ADORE this book — as well as the series’ previously published books, Nursery Rhyme Comics and Fairy Tale Comics. We love that 17 different cartoonists created one or more of the 28 illustrated fables, sometimes retelling a traditional, often unknown fable, and sometimes retelling with their own twist. The neat thing about this diversity in cartoonists, is seeing what the artist envisions for the style and tone of the art for each story. (That concept could be an entire lesson in itself!) I highly recommend this book not just for all kids but for kids with short attention spans, or reluctant readers, since the stories are short and fairly different. It holds your attention and you can stop and start anywhere in the book.
The Peculiar by Stefan Bachmann FANTASY
In this world of human and faery, mixed-race changelings, Peculiars, are outcasts. One such changling, Bartholomew and his sister, Hettie, are supposed to say hidden, away from danger. Yet, when Bartholomew is seen by the lady who kidnaps his neighbor, he’s thrust into a dangerous mystery that he must solve in order to save the other children before they are kidnapped, too.
Eddie Red Undercover: Mystery on Museum Mile by Marcia Wells MYSTERY
This story is about Eddie, a kid who is enlisted to help the police solve a crime because of his unusual skills – a photographic memory and amazing drawing ability. It’s a great adventure series, and I think your kids will love it.
Max Finder Mystery Vol. 7 by Craig Battle and Ramon Perez, created by Liam O’Donnell MYSTERY
Get ready mystery fans and young detectives – you’re in for some fun with this book! Each of the cases, told in comic form like in the Owl Magazine, develop the story and give you clues. Then, see if you can figure out the answers. When you turn the page, the clues and answer are explained. How great for critical thinking, right!?
Tales of a Sixth-Grade Muppet by Kirk Scroggs HUMOR
Danver’s hero is Gonzo from the Muppets – he wears a Gonzo t-shirt every day and does all his school presentations on Gonzo. But, he doesn’t expect to turn into a muppet himself! This comical turn of events isn’t too bad because Danver gets an internship with the Muppets and gets to work with his hero, Gonzo. Lots of laughs and filled with comics and illustrations make this a great choice for any Muppet fan.
The Mouse with the Question Mark Tail by Richard Peck, illustrated by Kelly Murphy ADVENTURE
This is a simple but charming story about a mouse grows up at Buckingham Palace longing for an identity. Not only does he not know his parents, he doesn’t even know his name! Happily, his adventures lead him to a very satisfactory conclusion.
Gaby, Lost and Found by Angela Cervantes REALISTIC
I picked this book because of the cat pictured on the front cover — and found it to be absolutely way more powerful meaningful than I had expected.
The Quilt Walk by Sandra Dallas HISTORICAL
I’m a big fan of Sandra Dallas’ adult historical fiction so I couldn’t wait to read this book for middle grade readers. It didn’t disappoint. The story follows Emmy and her parents from Illinois to Colorado by covered wagon. Dallas does a great job of character development, so we become just as concerned as Emmy when we see a fellow traveler being mistreated by her husband. We worry when Emmy finds a dog – and hope her father lets her keep it. I found this absolutely engaging and informative about the historical period, too.
Liberty Porter by Julia DeVillers REALISTIC
Liberty Porter is your average eight-year-old girl. Except for the fact that her dad is the newly-elected President of the United States. She just moved into her new house–the White House. And she’s about to start at her new school.
Horten’s Miraculous Mechanisms: Magic, Mystery, & a Very Strange Adventure by Lissa Evans FANTASY
Horten’s magician great-uncle Tony, whom he just learns about, disappeared mysteriously years ago. Horten and one of the triplet neighbors must piece together the clues left behind before his uncle’s house is destroyed by the city. He’s facing a deadline and also another scheming magician who wants to find the hidden secrets in Tony’s lost workshop.
Hyperspace High Crash Landing by Zac Harrison SCI-FI
Imagine going to school in space with classmates that are aliens. That’s John’s current situation – and it’s about to get more dangerous when a simple school trip turns dangerous. He won’t make it back alive if he and his friends don’t figure out something fast. I thought this was a great story!
Frank Einstein and the Antimatter Motor by Jon Scieszka, illustrated by Brian Biggs SCI-FI
Frank invents things. Most of the time, those things don’t work. Recently, Frank has been trying to make a robot who can think for himself (like Frankenstein) using old appliances and spare parts (toaster, keyboard, Shop-Vac). Frank doesn’t do it but in a miracle of fictional science, the robot builds himself. This book is a bit slower paced than I like but I think it’s a decent read that will appeal to young tinkerers.
Extraordinary by Miriam Spitzer Franklin REALISTIC
Pansy needs redemption. Last year, when her best friend needed her, Pansy didn’t keep her word. Now that her best friend is in a wheelchair and her brain isn’t working, Pansy decides that she will make it up to her. She’ll be brave and do everything. She links her actions to Anna’s recovery, not realizing that Anna is permanently brain damaged. This is a deeply moving story of loss and acceptance.
Enchanted Emporium Compass of Dreams by P.D. Baccalario FANTASY
Although this book is from last summer, I just recently read it to see if I would like the series. (This is the second book in the series.) And I did like it! I loved the setting in Scotland and the characters — the magical Enchanted Emporium shop’s daring young Aiby Lily and the likable but ne’er-do-well Finley. Together the pair determine to rid their town of the sheep-stealing, soul-taking Green Man.
Cleopatra in Space #1: Target Practice by Mike Machack SCI-FI
Cleopatra is transported to the future on a different planet where she learns she’s destined to save the world. To prepare, she attends school (sort of) and trains with a wise old cat. She’s sent on her first mission before she is fully ready. Can she do it or will her lack of preparation ruin the mission? Difficult to follow at first but overall entertaining.
Grace American Girl REALISTIC FICTION
My daughters both love American Girl dolls and books. Grace is the doll of the year for 2015. The book is about Grace’s adventure in Paris with her relatives, including a step-cousin who doesn’t seem to like her or speak much English. Grace develops her courage for new things as well as her cooking skills in her uncle’s bakery. And slowly she and her cousin develop a friendship. It’s a good, easy-to-read book where you’ll learn more about French cooking and words set in the City of Lights.
The G-Man Super Journal Awesome Origins by Chris Giarrusso SCI-FI
The Girl with the Glass Bird by Esme Kerr MYSTERY
A lonely orphan named Edie is forced to leave her only known relative, and live at a strict boarding school in order to surreptitiously protect Anastasia, the Russian prince’s daughter. While she’s at it, she’s also supposed to discover what is behind all of Anastasia’s problems. Edie thinks there’s something fishy going on; that someone is trying to make Anastasia believe she’s going crazy. But, it’s not so easy to tell — it could be that Anastasia is lying. Then she learns that the headmaster knew her mother and was her mother’s sworn enemy. This is an engrossing mystery tangled with compelling characters and emotional resonance.
The Baking Life of Amelie Day by Vanessa Curtis REALISTIC
I enjoyed this book so much! The writing flows, the plot is engaging, the characters are fascinating — especially Amelie — and learning about living with Cystic Fibrosis is quite eye-opening. Amelie loves to bake (could you guess from the title?) and she’s made it to the semi-finals of a teen baking contest in New York City. Unfortunately, her health deteriorates (which happens when you have CF) and her mom won’t let Amelie compete. You won’t just love this story but also want to try the various recipes throughout the book – I love when authors do that.
Woundaout by Lev Rosen, illustrated by Ellis Rosen MAGICAL REALISM
This is an interesting story with a thought provoking topic of change — can you stop change and is change good, bad, or both? When their dads are killed, siblings Connor and Cordelia and their pet capybara travel to live with their aunt who lives in the very strange city of Woundabout. It’s strange because it’s empty of children, greenery, and any spontaneity. It turns out the townspeople are totally against change, of any kind. It’s Conner and Cordelia who force the town, and their aunt, to realize that change isn’t always bad.